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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Putin Gets High Marks for Policy

President Vladimir Putin's aggressive foreign policy enjoys huge support at home, an opinion poll indicated Tuesday, adding in a commentary that Putin seemed more liberal than most his people.

Half of those polled believed Putin would run again for president in March.

The survey, conducted for Renaissance Capital by state-controlled pollster VTsIOM, showed that 81 percent of 1,600 people polled in 46 regions in mid-June agreed that Russia was forging a strong global role.

Asked about increasing government involvement in the economy, 90 percent said they backed the policy.

"Given the significant popular pressure, it is impressive that the government under President Putin has been as hands-off as it has been with the economy," a note accompanying the poll results said. "Similarly, Putin's more aggressive foreign policy stance, while undermining relations in the West, has proved popular at home. The case can be made that Putin is a liberal relative to the median Russian voter."

The poll indicates that most Russians believe Putin has done the right thing by making national resurgence and a quest for a new global role -- possible now after several years of strong economic growth -- key themes of his presidency.

A total of 66 percent of respondents agreed, to varying extents, that Russians lived better now than in the Soviet Union in 1991. Seventy-two percent said Russia was moving in the right direction.

Assuming Putin steps down as pledged next March, 52 percent said they would "definitely" or "probably" vote for a candidate of his choice.